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How Looking Back on 2020 Can Help You Learn and Grow

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Published 31/12/2020
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As we come to the close of the year, there are going to be many a news article or sarcastic TV comedian that will be highlighting just how stupendously rubbish 2020 was, but was it all bad..? And if it really was all bad, then can we use that to make 2021 the year that we all learn and grow ?

Were there any good things that happened in 2020?

That’s a very personal question, as we may have all shared in a very similar experience this year, but it will have affected us in many different ways. However, hopefully we can all agree that there was some light in all that dark, and it’s healthy to look back on that and think ‘I guess it wasn’t all bad’.

For instance, when the lockdown first hit in the UK, the entire nation seemed to bond over a ridiculous documentary series about a man and his tigers. Tiger King might not be the first thing that you think of when looking back on 2020, but when it seemingly appeared out of the blue on Netflix back in March, it gave thousands of people all across the country something to take their mind off of the isolation and the fear of what was happening all around us. You just have to Google ‘Tiger King Memes’ and you’ll see just how much it brightened up a very difficult couple of weeks.

If it’s a bright light in the dark you’re looking for, then you really don’t need to look much further than everybody’s favourite Grandad, Captain Tom. While a bumbling government spent money on equipment that didn’t exist, a 99 year old veteran of the Second World War took it upon himself to do 100 laps of his garden to celebrate his 100th birthday and to raise money for the NHS. Not only did he manage to walk his way around the 100 laps, but he walked right into the hearts of the nation as well, earning himself a knighthood, a Pride of Britain award, and even a coveted golden Blue Peter badge. His fundraising page has raised over £30 million pounds for the NHS to date, in a year in which we definitely learned how important it is to give back.

But maybe you would rather not look back, and you want to look forward instead. Yes, 2020 had it’s highs, but it certainly had more than its fair share of lows too. Not just the effects of covid-19, but across the globe we had wildfires, protests, riots, and a President who thought that drinking bleach might be a good idea (it really isn’t). So what can we do to learn from this year, and grow into the next?

New Year's Resolution Ideas for 2021

New Year’s Resolutions aren’t really something I go in for usually, they feel like a trite and insincere way of committing to something that you’re really never going to see through. But after all that we have just been through together, I really believe that it is important to try and take something away from it and not just forget 2020 ever happened. This doesn’t have to be anything big, in fact starting small often makes your goals more achievable and gives you a solid foundation to build from.

Read More Books
Streaming services are one of the business areas that have really flourished this year. I know that my bandwidth has certainly been stretched by the amount Netflix, Amazon Prime and Disney+ that we’ve consumed. So I want to make a commitment to read more books in 2021, and I may even start to keep track of what I’ve read using a site like Goodreads.

Write Letters
2020 took communication digital in a big way. Most businesses already used digital forms of communication for the most part anyway, but 2020 saw us move that into our homes, and even great-grandparents were video calling you before you even had a chance to change out of your PJs. So why not take a step back from the technology and write someone a good old fashioned letter? Not only is writing a therapeutic hobby, but it gets you away from the screen for a while, and it’s guaranteed to put a smile on the recipients face.

Start therapy
This one might not seem like a positive one to leave you on, but it really can be if you are one of those who feels like they were just ‘surviving’ in 2020 rather than living. Talking face to face with a stranger and releasing all your anxieties from the last year could be the most therapeutic and freeing way to start 2021. Talking to a therapist doesn’t mean that you’re in some way damaged or that there’s something wrong with you, it could just be the opportunity you need to clear your mind and say ‘I didn’t just survive 2020, I beat it.’

What do you resolve to achieve in 2021? Did 2020 have any positive effects on you?

Please let us know in the comments section below.

And finally, from everyone at, we hope you have a prosperous (and less pandemic-y) 2021.
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